Monday, June 16, 2014

Review: City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare

In the last installment of Cassandra Clare's bestselling series "The Mortal Instruments", Clary and her friends have to save the world (of course!). They still find the time to agonize over their love lives. go shopping for christmas presents... Even when they find themselves quite literally in hell, they still worry about their relationships, one of them even gets drunk. In real life, these guys wouldn't have lasted a day in that war.

The writing is not terrible, but it isn't exactly good, either. At one point, Clare compared stalactites to "electrified icicles". Ugh.

There's no shortage of corny moments, either. I don't want to spoil too much, but at one point a vampire dies because they were tricked into drinking holy water, and their skin peels back until only the bones are left and then those crumble to ash. That's freaking ridiculous, how on earth am I supposed to take that seriously?

Most of the kissing scenes were boring and read like something out of a fan-fiction.
There's a sex scene, about half-way through the book and I don't like it's handled. I can see why Clare tried to keep it vague, since it still is a YA novel, and you can't put a too explicit sex scene in there. This one's vague enough that it was hard to understand what was going on. I would have preferred it if Clare had made the scene fade to black, like she did in "Clockwork Princess". Also, who the hell packs up for Hell and brings condoms along?

Yet, in the words of immortal poets Icona Pop, "I don't care. I love it!"

For all the cheesy and trashy moments, for all the inconsistencies, for all the dumb things the main characters do, I still enjoyed this novel very much. It's a lot of fun, and it kept me hooked (any book that can keep me up until two o'clock twice in a row deserves an honorable mention).

The humor is great, as always, and I even caught myself laughing out loud several times.

I also don't mind all the relationship drama, despite the fact that it is unrealistic. The only couple I cared about in book five were Magnus and Alec, but this time around I found myself rooting for all of them - Jace and Clary, Izzy and Simon, Jocelyn and Luke…
I especially enjoyed the platonic relationships, which were well-developed in this novel. I was glad for the fact that Alec and Jace's friendship and their parabatai bond was expanded upon, since in the previous books almost no details were given about it.

Even tough they sometimes did some pretty dumb things, the characters were very likable. Even Alec, whom I have never liked all that much, became much more fun and interesting in this book, as he finally stood up for himself, instead of spending all his time scowling and wallowing in his insecurities. I am now glad that he and Magnus broke up in the last book, having to go through the pain of heart-break made Alec into a much stronger and interesting character. 
Clary, who in the previous books only had a couple of badass moments and had to be saved more often than not, had some time to train and became an actually skilled warrior. I had fun reading about her, something that didn't happen when I read the previous two books. She's not only powerful, strong and determined. Most of all. she's clever and scheming. I like that in a main character.  

Despite the fact that I know that this book has flaws, I enjoyed it very much, and I still recommend it, if you're in the mood for something fun and adventurous and you like YA and Urban Fantasy. 

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